Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Phone Actresses and Conspiracy Theories

Three years ago, I gave a guest-lecture entitled "Conspiracy Theories, American-Style" in an British-university American Studies class. Fifty-plus students sat in a lecture hall furiously taking notes on a variety of conspiracies surrounding topics such as Marilyn Monroe's death, the assassination of JFK, Denver International Airport and The Illuminati, DTV transmission, and the Frozen Envelope.    Trust me, these are just a few of the conspiracies that occupy the mind and social media lives of more Americans than you probably imagine. Don't believe me? Google "conspiracy theories in America" and read on . . . and on . . . and on. 

I closed my presentation with the wry comment that, although I have never been a conspiracy theorist, I had to admit that more than once as I was doing research for the lecture, a fleeting thought passed through my mind. Were my hours and hours of online and university library research bringing me to the attention of some government agency monitoring such activity? The students chuckled at the irony.

Similar thoughts -- minus conspiracy theories -- crossed my mind more than a few times the past few weeks as I've done research for a novel I am working on. Oh, I highly doubt that anyone is even remotely interested in my activities, but I wished more than once that, just in case someone out there somewhere was, I could somehow put the following disclaimer on my activities:

   I am only researching 'phone actresses' and 'phone sex operations' in order to write a novel.

I'm sure that would get someone's attention!

But it's the truth. As much as I'd love to work from home in comfortable work-out clothes and no make-up, readily-available (healthy) snacks at my side, I am not considering a career talking dirty over the phone with complete strangers.

The entire idea makes me laugh hysterically.

I don't have the requisite sultry voice, my hearing aids often make telephone conversations an iffy proposition, and I can't bring myself to use "those" anatomical terms -- not even with my doctor.

There is no doubt that if I counted on income as a phone actress, I would starve and my beloved bank would be auctioning off my home on the steps of the county courthouse.

It's a good thing, then, that what I've learned about the phone sex industry will only be put to use in a manuscript.



8 comments:

  1. Patti, I needed a good chuckle today. Thanks :)

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  2. Thanks for stopping by, Beckie -- glad I brought a bit of laughter to your day. :)

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  3. Darn - just when you catch my interest, your article is over. How about telling us what you learned about this industry in your next blog?

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    1. I might return to this again, but I'll just have to see where the writing urge takes me. :)

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  4. You will probably start getting a great deal of inappropriate junk mail now that is from the cookies your research leaves behind. When I was doing similar research on pole dancing and a specific club in Anchorage, Alaska for my novel "Eagle Visions" it was a few years before I stopped getting spam mail for "gentlemen's clubs!"

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    1. I thought of that and tried to minimize it as much as possible. I did all my research from a public wifi -- my hope was that the ISP would be different from my house. I also created a new email account with (I admit it) fake information. A nonsense name of mixed-up letters, etc. It may not have done a bit of good, but my fingers are crossed. :)

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  5. Funny! Seriously, though, my family is almost all taken in by conspiracy theories, to the point that I'm never sure when I might mention something that will set one off. It makes me so sad!

    Heather Bock
    www.glimpsesofjesus.com

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    1. Heather, when I first began researching for the lecture, I was amazed that anyone would believe these things, but then I realized that every single one of them is built on a couple of facts. Of course (in my opinion), the other speculation added on and the conclusions drawn aren't logical, etc, but those few facts keep them going. And to be very honest, the more I read about each theory, the more I had to remind myself to read critically. I'm a very practical person, a realist, but I could feel myself being sucked in, even as I was jotting down the errors, fallacies, etc. It's a weird thing that I can't really explain.

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